Heavy molecuels are concentrated near Saturn's equator, which suggests they came from the planet's rings. Credit: NASA / JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

Mysterious particles in Saturn's atmosphere may have been shed by the gas planet's rings, according to data from the Cassini spacecraft and presented by researchers at a conference this week.

What they saw: Before Cassini (rest in peace) plummeted into Saturn last month, the spacecraft made several dives through the planet's outer atmosphere. A mass spectrometer on board detected large, complex molecules in the planet's atmosphere — including methane, carbon dioxide and more complex molecules, reports Alexandra Witze for Nature. The researchers believe the particles came from the rings because they were most common around the planet's equator and high altitudes.

Why it matters: The voyage allowed them to test long-standing hypotheses about the composition of Saturn's atmosphere. By studying planets in the outer solar system, we can learn more about how our corner of the cosmos formed.

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The 53 countries supporting China's crackdown on Hong Kong

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman with Chinese President Xi Jinping. Photo: Rolex/Pool/Getty Images

China's foreign ministry and state media have declared victory after 53 countries joined a statement at the UN Human Rights Council supporting Beijing's new national security law for Hong Kong — compared to 27 who criticized the law.

The big picture: The list of 53 countries was not initially published along with the statement, but has been obtained by Axios. It is made up primarily of autocratic states, including North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Syria and Zimbabwe.

CO2 emissions may have peaked, but that's not enough

Reproduced from DNV GL; Chart: Axios Visuals

More analysts are making the case that COVID-19 could be an inflection point for oil use and carbon emissions, but it's hardly one that puts the world on a sustainable ecological path.

Driving the news: The risk advisory firm DNV GL, citing the pandemic's long-term effects on energy consumption, projects in a new analysis that global CO2 emissions "most likely" peaked in 2019.

U.S. economy added 4.8 million jobs in June

Data: Bureau of Labor Statistics; Chart: Axios Visuals

The U.S. economy added 4.8 million jobs last month, while the unemployment rate dropped to 11.1% from 13.3% in May, according to government data released Thursday.

The state of play: While the labor market showed more signs of recovery when the government’s survey period ended in early June, the lag means that more recent developments, like the surge in coronavirus cases and resultant closures in some states, aren't captured in this data.